In 2002 one of my friends came to South East Asia and said that Vietnam was what we usually expect from Asia. Bicycles and peoples with straw hats everywhere. I just came from Vietnam and now I’m in Cambodia and I can tell you that there isn’t much bicycles left. They all been replaced by motorbikes and scooters.
To see that the image we have as westerners from S.E.A. is not true anymore. In only 5 years the bicycles are now an endangered species and only the children and the elders are still riding them. I guess the good part is it means that the locals now have enough money to afford motorbike and it most increase there quality of life. But when you see the numbers of bikes the first think that jump in your head is the amount of CO2 that is produce by them. There’s litterally 100 thousands of them in the cities. It’s now a real challenge just to cross the street as the traffic lights are mearly suggestions here.
In Shangai they might have found a good solution, motorbike are now prohibited, only electric motorbike are allowed to use the roads. One problem that is bring is as they don’t make any noise you can’t hear them come and I stepped more then once in the street and was almost killed by one. Just have to adjust the reflexes and not count to much on the sound before crossing a street. But what will the blinds do!? :)